|CYA Class Agent Year/Program :
|Barnard College/Columbia University
|European History and Languages
Dear JMara DelliPriscoli how did your study abroad experience with CYA contribute to your personal, academics and professional development?
The Educational Travel Consortium, now in its 33rd year, as well as the Educational Travel Conference, might not have been founded by me if it had not been for my "experiential learning" study in Greece.
CYA was the platform that inspired me to devote my career to lifelong learning through travel - first by designing and operating study travel programs for a tour operator that focused on adult travel for the Smithsonian Study Travel Program, and then by founding and expanding a professional development platform on a global scale for all those professionals in the field of adult educational travel to learn, share best practices and network. www.educationaltravelconsortium.com
On the strictly academic side - Approaching teaching from more of a British tutorial method in several courses, I was encouraged to creatively and "critically think" about a subject topic, and write my personal assessment from statement to a well-orchestrated / drawn conclusion. Quite different from my prep and public school education, and liberating for an inquisitive mind.
What is your favorite memory of the city of Athens?
Evening walks/drives under the Acropolis, the beach "discos", late-night chocolate bar runs to the street kiosk, reflective moments under the stars from the rooftop of my apartment building (no longer standing in Kolonaki) and those long walks from my apartment in Kolonaki to classes daily - yes and the endless stairs!
Would you like to share a special memory with us?
CYA was a "gap" year for me - long before "gap" years came in vogue. However as one of the seven or so "freshman" - and at the end of the year one of maybe "five" left - it was a special experience indeed for an 18-year-old. From my unplanned hitchhiking excursion back from the northern border one weekend (almost got me sent home!), to an accident with a bus and court witness appearance, to seeing soldiers with guns on every corner, to monthly talks with my brother in the USA via ham radio (no cell phones or Zoom or Internet then!) to the many "special" late-night coffee gatherings in Plaka, to sitting on the Acropolis reading Herodotus, I find that there are just too many really special memories to share!